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JTL fundraising event honours former apprentice
Published:  02 February, 2016

Training charity JTL is organising a Company + Apprentice Go-Kart Race in Chatham, Kent, to honour a former apprentice who died in 2015.

The two hour 'Enduro' race will take place on 15 March, during National Apprenticeship Week, at Buckmore Park Kart Circuit near Chatham, Kent.

The Memorial Race will honour Phoebe Stockford, an apprentice electrician working for electrical contractors Darke and Taylor in Oxford. Lively and outgoing, she reprensented the company and promoted JTL and the wider sector in order to influence other young women who are interested in becoming electricians, but are often concerned at joining a profession that is hugely male-dominated.

One of her passions was motorcycle racing and it was at a British Motorcycle Racing Club Track Day, at Pembrey Race Track in South Wales, that she died following a freak accident at the age of 22.

JTL's Mark Syrett and ECA's Martin Cordrey are organising the event. Mr Syrett said: "This Go Kart Race event is an attempt to raise significant funds for charity, with the teams competing for the Phoebe Stockford Cup – we hope very much it will become an annual event, moving around the Region."

JTL's equality and diversity manager Yasmin Damree-Ralph, who worked closely with Ms Stockford, added: "Anyone who met Phoebe would remember her. She was great company and enormous fun, as well as being very good at what she did. To lose her at such a young age was a tragedy that touched everyone who knew her. Phoebe loved racing and we hope this event will keep her name in our minds for many years to come."

JTL is hoping to attract 25 teams to participate in the event, each with five team members – four drivers and one team manager – with no more than one professional kart driver per team. Each team must have an apprentice driver. Practice will take place during the day with the race starting in the evening under the lights at the circuit.

Mr Cordrey added: "We are looking for Building Engineering Services companies to race and their suppliers to help sponsor the teams (£200), just like in F1, and we will bear both company and supplier names on the trophy. Any electrical/plumbing company or contractor can participate, as long as they have an apprentice employed and taking part. We see this day/night race as a great example of our industry coming together for an important reason and I think it will be very competitive.”

Email Martin.Cordrey@eca.co.uk for more information.